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Stars-Wild Preview

by Mark Stepneski @StarsInsideEdge / Inside Edge

Dallas Stars at Minnesota Wild
Thursday, February 16
7:00 p.m.
TV: Fox Sports Southwest
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM

About the Stars

The Stars (22-26-10) lost 5-2 at Winnipeg Tuesday. The Stars rallied from a 2-0 deficit to tie the game in the second period, but Winnipeg's Patrik Laine scored the game-winning goal with 5:07 remaining in the third period.

"I have to stand here and tell the same story too many times," said Stars coach Lindy Ruff. "I thought we did a heck of a job, we didn't spend a lot of time in our end, and we made a few mistakes here and there. But I thought our guys played a hell of a game. I can't criticize them for that game."

The loss was the sixth in the past seven games (1-6-0) for the Stars.

John Klingberg, Patrick Sharp, and Jason Spezza did not practice on Wednesday.

"We'll see," Ruff said. "More maintenance but we've got a few banged up guys. We'll wait and see what tomorrow brings. "

Thursday's game concludes a three-game road trip for the Stars.

Injuries: D Johnny Oduya (ankle), RW Ales Hemsky (hip) and C/LW Mattias Janmark (knee) are on injured reserve.

About The Wild

The Wild (37-13-6) had a five-game points streak snapped with a 1-0 loss to Anaheim in St. Paul Tuesday. Joseph Cramarossa scored 4:38 into the game for Anaheim and Ducks goaltender John Gibson made it stand up with a 37-save shutout.

"You're never happy when you lose," Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. "We're not happy. It was a valiant effort by our guys, but at the same time we didn't succeed in what we were trying to do."

The Wild lost in regulation for just the fifth time in their past 34 games (26-5-3).

Thursday's game is the fifth of an eight-game homestand for the Wild.

Injuries: D Matt Dumba (lower body) is out. D Jonas Brodin (finger) and D Victor Bartley (arm) are on injured reserve.

Season Series

*This is the fifth and final meeting between the Stars and Wild this season.

*The Stars are 1-2-1 in the season series.

*Oct. 29, at Minnesota: Wild 4, Stars 0
*Nov. 21, at Dallas: Stars 3, Wild 2 (OT)
*Jan. 14, at Dallas: Wild 5, Stars 4
*Jan. 24, at Dallas: Wild 3, Stars 2 (SO)

Statistical Tidbits

*The Stars have lost five straight on the road.

*The Wild are 2-1-1 in the first four games of their eight-game homestand.

*The Stars are 8-13-4 vs. the Central Division.

*The Wild are 12-4-3 vs. the Central Division.

*The Wild are 13-3-2 following a loss this season, including seven straight wins.

*The Stars are 11-49 (22.5 percent) on the power play over the past eleven games.

*Minnesota has been shorthanded just six times over the past five games and has allowed one power-play goal during that stretch.

*Stars captain Jamie Benn has 18 points (nine goals, nine assists) in his past 13 games.

*Wild forward Zach Parise has scored five goals in his past eight games. 

This story was not subject to approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.

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